CORVALLIS — Jan. 18, 1950 - Feb. 2, 2020
Born on a blustery winter day in Saginaw, Michigan, David was the youngest child of Steve and Greta Berenyi. His family moved to Doylestown, Ohio, when David was very young, and he grew up learning the construction trade from his father, and Hungarian cooking from his mother. He was a Cub Scout, and spent time in the Ohio forests, but his itch to roam grew early.
He attended Chippewa High School and graduated in 1968. He worked in construction, and began his fine woodworking hobby.
In 1971, he met his wife Brenda and they began a 49-year romance. They crossed the country with little more than a camper and a pickup truck, exploring the wilds of the Western US and Canada. Dave helped raise his sister's two daughters, Michele and Gretchen, helping them to become strong, independent women, and supporting their dreams and goals while teaching them how to fish, camp, and enjoy the outdoors.
David and Brenda married in 1979, and began chasing their dreams of mountains shortly thereafter. They settled first in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, where Dave continued his work in construction, moving to a Superintendent position with the newly created Hagadone Construction, and then to Project Manager with Goebel Construction and Goodale Barbieri Co. During this time he and Brenda welcomed two children: daughter, Jackie and son, Stephen.
Yearning for a quieter life, in 1993 the family moved to Corvallis — a place they would call home for the remainder of David's life. David went to work for Western Interstate, Inc. as a construction manager, before becoming a co-owner. He worked with businesses across western Montana for more than 20 years, building and remodeling.
At home he kept a pristine garden, filled with plants he coaxed from the soil each spring, gently cajoling them to life with a combination of care and muttering. He spent much of his time creating fine woodworking projects of his own design and upgraded the family home space-by-space and whim-by-well-planned-whim.
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He powered through health problems after retirement to regain mobility and strength, and used his determination in all manner of projects and ideas.
Together with his best friend and soul mate, he traveled, camped, and planned more travel. He was extremely proud of his two children and spent as much time with them as he could. He was always up for an adventure or a beer, depending on the circumstances, and could be counted on to show up to supervise any project his kids came up with. His favorite places were his back deck, his garden or shop, and his daughter's patio, sharing a drink.
He never grew tired of the mountains of Montana, or his Corvallis east bench view, and could frequently be heard telling anyone who came by "look at this view, this is why we live here."
He took great pride in teaching his children his woodworking and construction skills, and though a compliment was rare, he was very proud of their growing portfolio of work and individual career achievements. His favorite days were a quiet, sunny spot, a cold beer, and a dog laying nearby, surrounded by his family.
David was preceded in death by his parents, Steve and Greta Berenyi; and his brother, Stevie, all of Ohio; close friends, PJ Cunningham of Coeur d'Alene, and Clark Carey, of Stevensville.
He leaves behind wife, Brenda, of Corvallis; daughter, Jackie and son-in-law Steve Gundersen, of Hamilton; son, Stephen, of Everett, Washington; sisters, Kathy and Veronica; nieces, Michele (Tim) Dobbins, and Gretchen Berenyi; step-daughter, Missy Swinderman-Wein (Adam); special sister-in-law, Sherrie and husband Will Leach; and numerous nieces and nephews, all of Ohio. He also leaves behind close friends, Larry Polin, Buddy Boggess, Jerry Gardner, and Bill Wilkie. Dave had a special bond with his dog, Abby, and his cat, Frank.
A private celebration of life will take place at the height of summer, Dave's favorite time of year. Daly Leach has take care of cremation.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations to Bitter Root Humane Association. Condolences may be left for the family at dalyleachchapel.com.